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The Connection Between Athletes & Poor Oral Health

Athletes are typically praised for their high level of wellness and health. However, did you know athletes tend to have more teeth-related issues than most? A recent study found that untreated tooth decay and gum inflammation was still prevalent among elite athletes despite regular brushing and flossing. Keep reading for some athlete related dental advice from Dr. Mary Kay Becher and Dr. Avery Gil at Mary Kay Becher DDS PA.

Some athletes’ tooth related issues stem from the consumption of high-acid drinks, gels and energy bars. These all can weaken tooth enamel and damage teeth due to high sugar content and acidity. Studies have shown that nearly half of elite endurance athletes had untreated tooth decay, and the majority of them had early signs of gum inflammation. This is despite these athletes otherwise having good oral hygiene habits.

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What to Expect at an Orthodontic Evaluation

Orthodontics is a great way to get the smile of your dreams! Beyond cosmetic improvements, orthodontics can help correct jaw conditions, bite dysfunctions, and crooked teeth. If you or your child are experiencing any of these issues, an orthodontist may be able to help. Additionally, oral health is very important and an orthodontist can help to keep your oral health in tip-top shape! Keep reading to learn from Dr. Mary Kay Becher and Dr. Avery Gil at Mary Kay Becher DDS PA about what to expect at your initial visit to the orthodontist.

When you arrive at the orthodontist for the first time, the staff will check you in and then you will have the opportunity to meet the doctor. They will take some time to look at your teeth and explain to you what your best treatment options are. During this time, the orthodontist will measure the person’s bite. This will help the doctor to detect any issues that will need correction. Additionally, you will have an X-ray taken of your mouth to give the orthodontist another look at your teeth in a different way. You may even have an impression, which is when the patient will bite into a try filled with a substance called alginate. This creates a mold of the person’s mouth and can help the orthodontist to have a look at the patient’s tooth placement.

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What is the Difference Between a Dentist and an Orthodontist?

Many people don’t know the difference between a dentist and an orthodontist. This confusion is common because both doctors work on teeth. However, it is important to understand the difference between them. When you have a problem with your teeth, jaws, or gums, it is important that you are seeing the right professional for your needs. Learn more from Dr. Mary Kay Becher and Dr. Avery Gil at Mary Kay Becher DDS PA.

There are some similarities between the two doctors. Both dentists and orthodontists are involved in the care of teeth and solving dental problems. Additionally, both of them are dental school graduates. However, there are some differences between the two.

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What Goes on Below the Surface In Your Mouth

Two-thirds of what goes on in your mouth is below the surface. Most people are just concerned about having straight teeth and pearly whites, however, oral health goes far beyond that. That is why orthodontists use x-rays. Orthodontists use x-rays to check below the surface of the mouth to look for extra teeth, missing teeth, impacted teeth or teeth coming into the wrong positions. To learn more about the importance of x-rays keep reading from Dr. Mary Kay Becher and Dr. Avery Gil at Mary Kay Becher DDS PA.

Looking below the surface is so important because some things may be hiding in your mouth that can only be seen through x-rays. Impacted teeth may prevent adult teeth from “erupting”, or growing into your mouth properly. An impacted tooth can even harm the roots of nearby teeth, cause crowding and other teeth to move into unhealthy positions.

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Can Pacifiers and Thumb Sucking Affect My Child’s Teeth?

Many people wonder how pacifiers and thumb sucking can affect their child’s teeth. In short, it is a valid worry because if these actions are prolonged it can cause oral health issues. Thumb sucking or pacifier use is one of an infant’s natural reflexes, prolonged sucking can exert force on the teeth and jaws. To learn more about common orthodontic problems caused by prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use, read on from Dr. Mary Kay Becher and Dr. Avery Gil at Mary Kay Becher DDS PA.

If your child sucks a thumb, finger, pacifier, or lips, their teeth or jaw may growth may be affected. These bone changes can actually occur as early as 18 months. The most common issues include: protruding front teeth, an open bite, or a crossbite. If you continue to notice prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use, it is time to consult an orthodontist.

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Why Do Straight Teeth Matter?

Straight teeth help to create a beautiful smile. However, straight teeth actually do so much more than provide a great smile. Teeth are made to fit together in a certain way. If they don’t fit together properly, they can’t function properly, which can lead to a variety of oral health problems. To learn more about the importance of straight teeth from Dr. Mary Kay Becher and Dr. Avery Gil at Mary Kay Becher DDS PA, keep reading.

Straight teeth are easier to clean. It is easier to remove plaque when teeth are aligned. Additionally, crooked teeth provide more places for plaque to hide and get missed while brushing. Plaque buildup can result in cavities and gum inflammation.

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